Nowadays, gun violence is a serious problem in many parts of the world. As a result, it leads to the debate that should children be taught how to handle guns in school? In “Guns, sex and education: we teach kids about sex. We should teach them about guns too” of O’Meara, Jamie (2000), he argues that gun education should be part of the school curriculum. However, I do not think this is a good idea at all. In order to support his point-of-view, O’Meara starts his article by emphasizing how powerful a person feels when he/she possesses a gun.
He continues with the story about his childhood by comparing a gun as an interesting toy which satisfies children who always love to enjoy and learn about new experiences. In addition, O’Meara explains that instead of cautiously preventing children from using guns, people should educate them how to respond in a positive manner when they are put in the situation.
He also provides the advantages if schools offer the program which instructs students about guns. One of the benefits is instructors would have chances to check on children’s reactions toward the weapons. O’Meara assures that gun education and sex education have the same principle; therefore, children would have better judicious behaviors once their understanding about guns is well prepared. He finally concludes that before it is too late, the desires of knowing and understanding about guns in children should be officially accepted as sex is.
In the very first three paragraphs of O’Meara’s article, he brings the story about his childhood, his own personal experiences about guns.
Consequently, this is a valid argument. Although the whole three paragraphs are obviously his opinions, they are still logical. By using the comparison between a gun and a rock, O’Meara points out the logicality in his argument. It makes sense that without any actions, gun is only a rock. Guns are harmless unless people use them with purposes to gain their own desires. Moreover, these paragraphs also give a sense of the bigger picture about guns. The fact that everyone knows about guns, everyone knows how bad they affect the society but how many people who know how guns work and how horrible guns can destroy?
With these three paragraphs, O’Meara helps readers briefly understand how terrible and devastated a gun can be. Unfortunately, his narrative clearly does not relate much with his main argument about gun education. Could the ravages of a gun be changed if guns are taught in school? The situation is still the same. Hence, this supporting point is not really strong enough to prove that guns should be taught in school. Furthermore, O’Meara uses effectively a series of cause and effect statements to affirm that gun education should be available in school (para.6). He gives out the very simple examples to make his argument become logical and relevant. Children love to explore and there is no reason to stop them if people just simply tell them that guns are dangerous. Prohibition and threat will not keep them away from curiosity and this is true. On the other hand, his comparison between guns and alcohol is not powerful to convince readers regarding the argument of gun education. It is not reliable since there is no proof or anything can demonstrate this comparison is consistent. Thus, this point is not trustworthy and representative to support for the gun education.
Likewise, O’Meara once again makes his argument be logical. He clearly illustrates the advantages of sex education (para.12). Since sex is a part of human’s senses, learning about sex, children will comprehend the meaning of their physical bodies and also their sensual pleasures. From there, by using comparison, O’Meara gives readers a bigger picture of gun education. They both are the sources of natural desires which young people would love to examine. Hence, it is valid. Furthermore, this argument is also reliable. Today, teaching about sex in school is a fact and the influences of sex education to young people are effective. Therefore, it is trustworthy.
Despite some of his strategies are logical, trustworthy and reasonable, I fully disagree when he states “It’s the same principle that lies behind sex education” (para. 11). It obviously does not make any sense at this point. Sex education is based on the knowledge of physical body and biology which are also the subjects at school while gun education involves in violence which could ruin the society of a country. They basically come from two distinctive principles and lead to two different consequences that people should be aware of when it comes to making the decision of gun education. I also disagree with his supporting claim that gun shooting could be prevented if young people are well educated about guns (para. 10). Even if children are taught how to use guns at school, it does not mean that the violence from guns would decrease if they do not know how to control their emotions toward the angers. For instance, children who suffer the abuse from home will build up their madness days to days. Instead of revealing their problems to teachers or social workers, everything about guns which they are told at school will be helpful for their wanting of taking revenge. Therefore, I do not think gun education is a good solution. All in all, in his article, O’Meara is partially successful when using rhetorical strategies to present his argument. In contrast, he totally fails of using evidences and examples to persuade readers that gun education is proper. Children and guns is not a safe combination and gun education absolutely should not take place in educational system.
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